A rare Winnie-the-Pooh drawing highlights PBA Galleries April 19th sale of Illustrated & Children’s Books, Fine Printing, Art & Photography, and Books about Books sale. Included in the sale are 350 lots of striking and uncommon illustrated books and visual material, finely printed works in limited editions, scarce children’s books, and more, much of the material from the collection of the late Fred Bennett. Included are numerous books written by, designed, or with contributions by Merle Armitage; photographically illustrated books as well as original photographs; Golden Age illustrators Arthur Rackham, Edmund Dulac and Kay Nielsen; rare artist’s books; and many more.
The original ink and watercolor depicts a joyful Winne-the-Pooh and his friend Piglet. Beautifully drawn by E. H. Shepard, the original illustrator for A. A. Milne’s timeless series of stories of Christopher Robin and friends, it is a rare colored image of Pooh not intended for publication. Shepard has inscribed the card to his agent, Carter Brown. The illustrator rarely drew his most famous characters outside of his work for Milne (Estimate: $40,000-$60,000).
One of only five sets of progressive proofs for Jean Charlot’s Picture Book of 32 original lithographs, is offered with an original watercolor by the artist. One set of lithographs were divided among the edition in copies 1-32. The other four sets were bound in four volumes for the artist, the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, Lynton R. Kistler and Merle Armitage. This offering is the set prepared for the famed book designer, Merle Armitage and is signed by him at the front of each volume. Inserted in the front of the first volume is the original watercolor inscribed to Armitage by Charlot (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000).
Joel Peter Witkin’s The Maxims of Men disclose Their Hearts, one of only 40 numbered copies (total edition of 47), contains 15 original platinum prints. Housed in a tan silk covered case, the two-volume set consists of one volume of text and a photographic reproduction of a Witkin journal and a second larger volume with the prints, each signed by the photographer (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000). Another highlighted photographic work, Edward Weston: Nudes, by Charis Wilson, is accompanied with an original platinum photograph “Nude, 1920.” The photograph taken by Weston and printed by his son Cole, is included, as issued, in this limited-edition collection of Edward Weston’s sensuous nudes with excerpts from “The Daybooks and Letters” (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000).
From the Fine Press section of the sale are two featured lots. Taos Quartet by Merle Armitage, is his account of D.H. Lawrence’s sojourn in Taos, New Mexico, as a guest of Mabel Dodge Luhan. This is one of only 16 copies, of a book designed to be bound into the February 1951 issue of FLAIR and is inscribed by the author (Estimate: $2,500-$3,500). Robinson Jeffers’ Poems, is one of 310 copies printed by the Grabhorn Press, with an original signed photograph by Ansel Adams as the frontispiece, signed by Jeffers on the limitation page, and additionally inscribed by Jeffers to legendary Los Angeles bookseller Jake Zeitlin. The beautiful production includes initials printed in orange-red which were designed by Valenti Angelo (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000).
A rare signed first edition of Andy Warhol’s Children’s Book, is inscribed to John Fisher-Dann. Illustrated with classic Warhol outlines in bright hot colors, the book is also inscribed to Ernie, Fisher-Dann’s parrot, and is signed by Warhol on two other illustrations (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000). Also, for children is the Arthur Rackham illustrated Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen. Bound in the original full vellum, it contains 12 color plates and is one of 525 copies signed by Rackham (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000).
The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, April 16th, 1-5pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, April 17th and 18th, 9am-5pm and on Thursday, April 19th, 9-11am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected].